October 14, 2004
TAMPA, FL — Tampa’s historic Strand Theatre is at risk of demolition along with the surrounding buildings in its block. The Strand ceased operations as a movie theatre in the late 1940s and was incorporated into the adjacent buildings that served as the Maas Brothers Department Store in downtown Tampa.
Maas Brothers closed in 1991 and the whole complex hasn’t been maintained or used since that time, resulting in a rapid deterioration in the buildings. A real estate group, 610 Franklin Inc, purchased most of the block in 1998 but has done nothing since that time.
October 12, 2004
The Hinsdale Theatre Foundation, having been unsuccessful in its hard-fought attempt to restore and reopen the theater, has now disbanded and Kim Stephens, who was on the Foundation’s board of directors, said its remaining donated assets will be distributed among several groups in the area that focus on the arts.
October 11, 2004
BEVERYLY HILLS, CA — The Los Angeles Conservancy, along with several local preservationists, small business owners, and others are fighting plans to demolish the Beverly Theater, according to this Los Angele Times article,).
Opened in 1925, in recent years the remodeled Beverly Theater housed an Israeli bank. It is scheduled to be demolished and replaced with a 214-room luxury hotel if the effort to save it fails.
September 28, 2004
JERSEY CITY, NJ — The following message was sent by Friends of the Loew’s:
“This was not the message we hoped and expected to send out in preparation for the Loew’s [Jersey] 75th Anniversary.
Last June, Jersey City’s Acting Mayor, L. Harvey Smith told FOL he would sign the long-awaited lease of the Loew’s to us. A press conference was held at the Loew’s in mid June during which Mayor Smith was expected to do just that, but instead he unexpectedly announced he could not sign the lease because of “legal technicalities”. He promised, however, that those technicalities would be cleared up by his Law Department in two weeks and the lease would be signed then.
September 20, 2004
CHICAGO, IL — The Landmark Preservation Council of Illinois’s annual Watch List includes five Chicago movie theaters on its list of Chicago-area endangered buildings: the Uptown, the New Regal (Avalon), the Gateway, the Patio, and the Central Park.
The list, which first appeared two years ago, complements the Council’s Ten Most Endangered Historic Places in Illinois. Other non-theater buildings on the Chicago-area list in danger of demolition include buildings in Evanston formerly part of Northwestern University, the River Forest Women’s Club (designed by a former associate of Frank Lloyd Wright), and an estate in Highland Park designed by Howard Van Doren Shaw and Jens Jensen on the National Register of Historic Places.
For more information, read this Chicago Tribune article .
September 7, 2004
REGO PARK, NY — The wonderful Art Deco Trylon Theater in Queens is endangered. We have asked the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission to calendar and designate this structure, but so far no action has been taken.
Please help us by emailing the chair of the Landmarks Commission Robert Tierney and voicing your support. His email address is .org.
August 30, 2004
GARY, IN — According to a report from the Indianapolis Star, Lalosa Burns, spokesperson for the City of Gary, is reporting that City of Gary will be taking bids to demolish the Palace Theater sometime this year.
As local preservationist Erica Davis put it: “It would be a very good venue for a performing arts center or theater. It would take a lot of work. Unfortunately, the city of Gary has the sad tendency to demolish rather than restore.”
In my own opinion, judging from the fact that most of Gary is heavily gang and drug infested, and decaying at the same rate as the unfortunate Palace Theater, I hold little hope of anything being done to save this theater.
August 27, 2004
BAKER CITY, OR — A state building code that requires sprinklers in all three auditoria of the Eltrym Theatre may force its closure, according to the Corvallis Gazette-Times. In response to the impending order, over 1,200 signatures have been collected to save it.
Opened in 1940, the Art Deco Eltrym is now a 3-screen movie house and the only movie theater in Baker County. It was restored in 1997.
August 25, 2004
WEST HARTFORD, CT — The effort continues to save the Elm Theater from being turned into a Walgreens Drug Store. Elmwood Renaissance, the local organization behind the effort to preserve the theater as an arts venue, is in need of donations to cover the costs of publicity and legal expenses. Please consider sending a donation, no matter how small, to:
P.O. Box 330276
West Hartford, CT 06133-0276
August 9, 2004
ASBURY PARK, NJ — The world reknowned trombonist, Arthur Pryor, played and conducted his orchestra for 25 glorious summers in a boardwalk pavilion overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, in Asbury Park. In the late ‘60s, a pavilion with a bandshell roof was erected in Pryor’s memory.
Since then, Asbury Park has hit on bad economic times and sold all of its oceanside structures to a development rights holder who plans to demolish the section of the pavilion housing the bandshell, to replace it with office space.